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  • ISRO realigns orbit of Mars mission spacecraft ''Mangalyaan'':-Indian Space Research Organisation has successfully realigned the orbit of its Mars Orbiter Mission 'Mangalyaan' so it is not affected by long-duration eclipse, ISRO Chairman A S Kiran Kumar said....
  • LCA Tejas to take maiden R-Day flight:-After a gap of about two decades, an indigenously developed aircraft will take to the skies on Republic Day with LCA Tejas joining the fleet of 35 aircraft that will be part of an aerial display. ...
  • Clocks 'failed' onboard Europe's navigation satellites: ESA:-The European Space Agency announced on Wednesday there were "failed" clocks onboard some of the 18 navigation satellites it has launched for Galileo, Europe's beleaguered rival to America's GPS. ...
  • IAF chief Dhanoa reviews Indo-Oman air exercise in Jamnagar:-Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa and Commander of Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO) Matar Ali Matar Al-Obaidani on Wednesday reviewed the progress of the fourth joint exercise between India and Oman. The exercise, called "Eastern Brigade IV", is the fourth in a series of air drills that started in 2009 between the two countries....

Introduction

Even though missiles are believed to be modern weapon systems, there are innumerable references in epics to weapons that were of similar nature. The Mahabharat and Ramayan contain innumerable references to weapon systems that were similar to today's missiles.

In modern day parlance a powered guided munitions is called a missile. It carries a warhead and is propelled by rockets, or engines using turbofan, ramjet or turbojet technology.

There are primarily two different types of modern missiles: ballistic missiles and cruise missiles. Ballistic missiles are ammunition that follows a ballistic trajectory, while cruise missiles are ammunition that generates lift and has a high of level accuracy. The ballistic missile is an area weapon, while a cruise missile is a target specific weapon.

Besides references in Ramayan and Mahabharat, there are other fables and histories from other parts of the world where weapon systems that are similar to today's missiles find reference. In the first century after the Christ, aeolipile (the ball of Aeolus, the Greek god of wind) was invented by Hero of Alexandria. It was a rocket like engine.

In 12th century AD, there are references from China about rockets. A few centuries later, references about rockets can be also found in the 'Great Art of Artillery' by Kazimierz Siemienowicz published in the Netherlands.

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